As we head back to Split, Croatia for the Dota Pit Minor one thing stood out to me as I looked at the teams in attendance. They were all teams that needed to prove themselves, and do it in a big way. NiP only sit in a comfortable position because Mind_Control helped bring them to a top 4 finish at the first Major, aside from that they have earned a grand total of 220 points. Alliance have been at two Major’s already but aside from making the upper bracket before bombing out in Kuala Lumpur, they have not done much else. Forward and Gambit both sit behind Alliance in the rankings despite Forward Gaming taking part in all 3 Major’s up to this point and Gambit has finished 2nd at the two previous Minor’s, just missing out on the chance to earn big points.
EHOME currently hold on to the last of the invite slots but looked like a shell of their former selves at DreamLeague while Faith_Bian is out due to injury and eGo quite literally ran away from the team house. The last three teams, Royal Never Give Up, Boom ID, and Majestic Esports also desperately need to have a good showing at the Minor, not even for the points, just to prove to themselves that should they need to go through qualifiers for TI in their home regions that they are up to the task.
The Director Returns
The favourites to make it to the Major are undoubtedly NiP with each position being filled by veterans who know what it takes to win a tournament. We all know that PPD and his teammates have the ability to make their way to Disneyland, which is why it’s all the more confusing that they haven’t been able to overcome the hurdles their team has faced along the way. While NiP is currently safe in the DPC rankings at 7th, they are still within striking distance of the teams below them and would undoubtedly love to secure more points for themselves. The director will be making his return to ensure that doesn’t happen though.
Xiao8 is making his return to competitive Dota alongside Ferrari_430 and lead by y`. Three TI winners will be grouped together from different generations of Chinese Dota to attempt to recreate the success EHOME had at the Bucharest Minor. No matter what happens this week, we know we’re in store for some great games as the teams will be desperate to win.